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Imperial Japanese Navy (November 1908) Part One: Capital Ships

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Crimist avatar Crimist
Level 19 : Journeyman Architect
Built using Minecraft Java Edition 1.18.1 and 1.18.2

Built between November 2021 to May 2022


In late 1905, the Imperial Japanese Navy became the most powerful naval force in the Far East after defeating the Russians in the Russo-Japanese War (February 1904 to September 1905). By 1908, Japan had sixteen capital ships with five more in shipyards. In the same year, the Combined Fleet was re-established for use in the annual Fleet Maneuvers and the Imperial Naval Review. It was present at the port city of Yokohama during the visit of the United States Navy’s Great White Fleet in October 1908.

Between October and November 1908, the Combined Fleet conducted large-scale training exercises called the Fleet Maneuvers to train naval personnel in battle formations and gunnery practice. On 17th November 1908, the Combined Fleet gathered at Osaka Bay, next to the port city of Kobe, for the Imperial Naval Review, which involved 117 vessels of the Imperial Japanese Navy.

Despite the naval power that Japan possessed, its capital ships were considered obsolete as Britain’s Royal Navy had introduced the “All-Big-Gun" Battleship HMS Dreadnought, as well as the Invincible-class Battlecruisers. The countries of Brazil, Germany, and the United States are also building their own Dreadnought-type Battleships and Battlecruisers, while Japan is yet to build its own. Nevertheless, the Imperial Japanese Navy in 1908 shows that Japan is a powerful country with a strong naval force.

The Combined Fleet is divided into three major formations. The 1st Fleet is the navy’s primary battle formation and consisted of eight battleships divided into the 1st Division and 3rd Division. The fleet is commanded by Vice Admiral Baron Ijuin, who was a veteran staff officer and fit to command a peacetime battle fleet. The 2nd Fleet is the navy’s striking force and consisted of four capital ships under the command of Vice Admiral Baron Dewa, who was a veteran fleet commander during the Russo-Japanese War. The 3rd Fleet was a temporary unit created specifically for the months of October and November 1908. It consists of four capital ships which are mainly used for coastal defense. It is under the command of Vice Admiral Baron Tomioka, who is also the commander of the Ryojun Naval District, based at the former Russian naval base of Port Arthur, now called Ryojun under Japanese authority.


Order of the Line (November 17, 1908)

  First Fleet / First Battle Squadron – Vice Admiral Baron Ijuin, Goro

    First Division – Under the direct command of the Fleet Commander
      Mikasa, Battleship (Fleet Flagship) – Captain Mamoru Okumiya
      Fuji, Battleship – Captain Takeshi Takarabe
      Asahi, Battleship – Captain Ichiro Ishida
      Sagami, Battleship – Captain Mitsukane Tsuchiya

    Third Division – Vice Admiral Hikohachi Yamada
      Shikishima, Battleship (Division Flagship) – Captain Teijiro Kuroi
      Hizen, Battleship – Captain Tadamichi Kamaya
      Iwami, Battleship – Captain Hajime Ishibashi
      Suwo, Battleship – Captain Sango Obana

  Second Fleet / Second Battle Squadron – Vice Admiral Baron Dewa, Shigeto

    Second Division – Under the direct command of the Fleet Commander
      Tsukuba, Large Armored Cruiser – Captain Katsuhiko Hirose
      Ikoma, Large Armored Cruiser – Captain Tokuya Kamiizumi
      Katori, Battleship, (Fleet Flagship) – Captain Genzaburo Ogi
      Kashima, Battleship – Captain Masayoshi Fukui

  Third Fleet (Temporary Unit) – Vice Admiral Baron Tomioka, Sadayasu

    Coastal Defense Division – Under the direct command of the Fleet Commander
      Iki, Gunnery Training Ship, (Fleet Flagship) – Captain Kiyotomo Tsukiyama
      Chinyen, Training Ship – Captain Katsuya Kitano
      Okinoshima, Coastal Defense Ship – Captain Kishichiro Osawa
      Mishima, Coastal Defense Ship – Captain Tsunekichi Uemura

  Capital ships that are not present for the Imperial Naval Review:
    Tango, Battleship – Drydocked and refitting at Maizuru Naval Arsenal.
    Satsuma, Battleship – Launched, under construction at Yokosuka Naval Arsenal.
    Aki, Battleship – Launched, under construction at Kure Naval Arsenal.
    Ibuki, Large Armored Cruiser – Launched, nearing completion at Kure Naval Arsenal.   
    Kurama, Large Armored Cruiser – Launched, under construction at Yokosuka Naval Arsenal.


Sources for this project:

Wikipedia – Primary source for history of each ship. Different language versions give more detailed information, mainly on English, Japanese, German, Chinese, and Russian.

Materials of IJN (website)– Primary source for confirming the ship’s captain and the fleet commanders.

Navypedia (website)– additional source for the general characteristics of each ship.

Google Images – Primary source for confirming the ship’s appearance in the year 1908. But only a few ships have available images with accurate information and date.

The “1908 Japanese Navy Review Fleet Line” Map – Primary source for confirming the ships present at the naval review, position of each ship within the line of order, divisions and squadrons of the fleet, location of the naval review, and the exact date of the event.


Hi there, my name is Crimist!

I am happy to present to you the first part of my project called “Imperial Japanese Navy (November 1908)”. In this project, I build warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy present at the Imperial Naval Review in Osaka Bay next to the port city of Kobe in Japan, from November 17-18, 1908.

I want to thank everyone who supported this project and those who appreciate my builds. I come up with this project back in mid-2021 as I want to build a whole navy here on Minecraft. I choose to build the Imperial Japanese Navy of 1908 so that I can start with a project that is different from the others already shown here on Planet Minecraft (example: most builds here involving the Imperial Japanese Navy were from World War 2 era).

To be honest, I am having a hard time completing this project, even the first part. It is because of the Stress, Depression, and Anxiety that I have experienced during the first four months of 2022. But you're support and appreciation to this project motivates me to continue what I have started. Now I have "Gap Months" to try to complete this project as well as to start my other planned projects so that I can have a variety of builds that I can share and be proud of.

You can add me on Discord: “Crimist#7427” for more details about this project.

Anyways, thanks again for the support and see you on the next part of this project. PEACE!
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05/06/2022 11:39 am
Level 1 : New Miner
Nimitz avatar
how to download the map?
05/06/2022 8:41 pm
Level 19 : Journeyman Architect
Crimist avatar
I will upload the map once the whole project is over.
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